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Canadian News Jul 27, 2021 7:29 PM EST

Trudeau, who's been accused of sexual misconduct, slams Habs for drafting player who shared sexually explicit photos

Trudeau publicly lambasted the Montreal Canadiens on drafting a hockey player who shared sexually explicit photos of a woman without her consent. This despite being credibly accused of sexual misconduct himself.

Trudeau, who's been accused of sexual misconduct, slams Habs for drafting player who shared sexually explicit photos
The Post Millennial The Post Millennial

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau publicly lambasted the Montreal Canadiens on drafting a hockey player who shared sexually explicit photos of a woman without her consent. This despite being credibly accused of sexual misconduct himself.

"As a life-long Habs fan, I am deeply disappointed by the decision," Trudeau said in a press conference Tuesday. "I think it was a lack of judgment by the Canadiens organization. I think they have a lot of explaining to do to Montrealers and fans right across the country," adding that they showed a "lack of judgment" by drafting Logan Mailloux for its first-round pick in Friday's entry draft.

Mailloux, who was 17 at the time, was fined for breaking Swedish law after distributing photos of a sexual encounter without the explicit consent of the woman involved. She went to the police and Mailloux was charged with invasion of privacy and defamation, according to the Montreal Gazette.

In August of 2000, Trudeau, who was 28 at the time, is alleged to have groped former journalist Rose Knight at the Kokanee Summit in Creston, BC. "I issue this statement reluctantly, in response to mounting media pressure to confirm that I was the reporter who was the subject of the Open Eyes editorial, published in the Creston Valley Advance in August of 2000," wrote Knight to the CBC.

"The incident referred to in the editorial did occur, as reported. Mr. Trudeau did apologize the next day. I did not pursue the incident at the time and will not be pursuing the incident further. I have had no subsequent contact with Mr. Trudeau, before or after he became Prime Minister." She added: "The debate, if it continues, will continue without my involvement," she said.

Mailloux released a statement ahead of the draft informing of his decision to abdicate the draft because he did not demonstrate "enough maturity or character to earn that privilege in the 2021 draft." The Canadiens said they intend to provide him with "the tools to mature." He spoke to reporters on Saturday, adding: "I know I caused a lot of harm to this person and their family, and I regret doing this stupid and egotistical act."

Canadiens president and co-owner Geoff Molson has not commented on the budding controversy. However, the team is expected to release a statement Wednesday, according to Paul Wilson, the team’s head of public affairs.

Trudeau, on his groping allegation in July 2018, said he is "confident" that he did not act inappropriately, continuing, "but I think the essence of this is people can experience interactions differently and part of the lesson we need to learn in this moment of collective awakening ... people in many cases, women, experience interactions in professional contexts and other contexts differently than men."

"I apologized at the moment because I had obviously perceived that she had experienced it in a different way than I acted or I experienced it."

An unsigned editorial from the Creston Valley Advance reported Trudeau of "groping" and "inappropriately handling" a young female reporter. The same editorial suggested that the day following the incident, Trudeau offered an "apology of sorts": "I'm sorry," he is quoted as saying. "If I had known you were reporting for a national paper I never would have been so forward."

Since Monday, major sponsors, including the Jean Coutu pharmacy chain, the St-Hubert restaurant chain and the financial services cooperative Desjardins Group, are currently rethinking their relationship with the Montreal Canadians.

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